Working for King Charles is not like working a regular eight-hour job, as the monarch can be a demanding boss, sources who have spoken to the Times have claimed. One source said: “He was demanding in that he is always working. Seven days a week. Never stops. At any moment he may want to call you about something. Working on his boxes, on his ideas, on his papers. The pace is pretty intense.”
Another source said that phone calls from Charles could happen at any time of day, even on Christmas day.
Richard Aylard, King Charles’s private secretary in the 1990s, once received a phone call from the royal butler, Harold Brown, to say the former Prince of Wales would ring him at 3pm.
However, the butler phoned again at 3.30pm to say Charles would instead ring at 6pm, and this continued all weekend.
The ex-Duke of Cornwall eventually phoned and said to his private secretary: “Richard, I’ve been out in the meadow and I’ve found what I think is an orchid.”
According to a former member of the royal household, King Charles is also “never satisfied with himself, or what he has achieved. People around him had to work hard to keep up. He had enormous stamina”.
The source added: “He would drive people hard. He was full of ideas, always asking people to go and do things.
“The workload as private secretary would be immense. He had strong opinions. He also had a proper temper on him, which was quite fun.
“He would rarely direct it at the individual. It would be about something, and he would lose his temper. He would throw something.
“He would go from zero to 60 in a flash, and then back down again. Things would frustrate him, especially the media.”
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Catherine Mayer, an author who has written about King Charles, quoted a businessman she interviewed who set up an event at the monarch’s household.
The businessman is reported to have spoken about the “glaring flaws” in the organisation of the royal household and said he got the impression that members of staff would purposely cause issues so they could tell the monarch they had solved a problem
Another former member of the household, who worked for King Charles after he married Queen Consort Camilla, said: “Someone said to me early in my time how quite a lot of people in that world see it as quite zero-sum. If he’s talking to you, he’s not talking to me; if he’s reading your note, he’s not reading my note.”
They added: “Well, it’s a court, right? So in our case, there were two individuals who are the font of all power, and everyone wants to be close to that and to be drinking from that.”